The leadership deck is getting reshuffled at LG’s mobile division as fallout from disappointing sales of the flagship G5 smartphone.
According to Korea Times, LG confirmed that it has created a new program management office to oversee the mobile division, which sounds like a new nanny is in town to whip the underperformers into shape.
LG was rather blunt about the problems in a statement to the Korea Times:
“Friday’s announcement is because LG Electronics’ latest flagship G5 smartphone failed to generate sales.”
The hope is that “new momentum” will come from the retooled effort. Such maneuvers are a common practice in the industry when a flagship device underperforms.
In terms of the fresh faces, Mobile chief Cho Juno will be the main point person in the new office, which is now in charge of product development, manufacturing, marketing, and sales. Oh Hyung-hoon, who formerly headed the company’s research lab, will oversee the effort with assistance from mobile division vice president Ha Jeong-wook. Kim Hyung-jeong, a senior vice president at LG, has been named head of the company’s mobile research lab.
While our review found a lot to like with the G5, there wasn’t enough to really differentiate it from perks found in other devices like Samsung’s Galaxy line, the Nexus 6P, or many other competitors in the crowded field. Plus the “Friends” modules are quite expensive and not enough of a game changer to convert those with other smartphone loyalties.
Why this matters: LG is getting squeezed on all sides. It doesn’t have the same marketing cash as Samsung, yet it’s also getting challenged by many budget Chinese brands like Xiaomi. It’s too early to think that LG would ditch out on mobile entirely, but clearly a new strategy going forward is going to be necessary.